Family Management Skills Reported by Parents of Preterm Infants in the NICU Using the Self- and Family Management Framework (SFMF)

Ashley Weber, Tamilyn Bakas, Dena Schulman-Green, Kristin C. Voos, Jared B. Rice, Richard Bailey, Alexandra Reigel, Qutaibah Oudat, Maya Holmes, Heather L. Tubbs-Cooley, Heather C. Kaplan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Across the globe, family-integrated care (FICare) has become an evidence-based standard in which parents deliver the majority of infant care in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). Because of extensive barriers to parent presence, adaptations to FICare may be required for successful implementation. Family management theory may provide structure to the Parent Education of FICare and help nurses guide parents’ skill development as equal care members. Purpose: To identify family management skills employed by NICU parents using the Self- and Family Management Framework (SFMF). Methods: We conducted secondary analyses of qualitative interview data from NICU parents (n = 17) who shared their experiences of using family management skills to care for their infant. We categorized skills according to 3 main self- and family management processes: Focusing on Infant Illness Needs; Activating Resources; and Living With Infant Illness. Results: Parents reported several family management skills currently identified in the SFMF, as well as new skills such as conflict management, power brokerage, and addressing resources related to social determinants of health. Parent activation of resources was critical to sustaining parent focus on the infant’s illness needs. Implications for Practice and Research: By teaching skills that parents reported as helping them manage infant care, neonatal nurses may better facilitate parent integration into the care team. Future researchers can incorporate the skills identified in this study into the design of family management interventions that facilitate FICare implementation in the United States.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)119-131
Number of pages13
JournalAdvances in Neonatal Care
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2024


  • family nursing
  • family-integrated care
  • infant
  • intensive care units
  • neonatal
  • newborn
  • parents
  • self-management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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